European Journal of Plant Pathology

, Volume 144, Issue 3, pp 671–686 | Cite as

Rhizoctonia communities in soybean fields and their relation with other microbes and nematode communities

  • Bo Liu
  • Weishou Shen
  • Hsinho Wei
  • Hosanna Smith
  • Frank J. Louws
  • James R. Steadman
  • James C. Correll


Soybean root rot, caused by Rhizoctonia solani, is one of the most serious soybean diseases in the North Central Region of the United States. There is no report of the relationship between Rhizoctonia root rot and soil physical and chemical properties, or microbial and nematode communities. A commercial soybean field with a long history of Rhizoctonia root rot was examined to explore this relationship. Results demonstrated that high disease incidence in sampled areas was positively correlated with high levels of nitrogen, phosphorus, manganese, populations of soil Rhizoctonia, thermophiles and fungi, root Rhizoctonia colonies, populations of lesion and stunt nematodes, and negatively correlated with high levels of calcium, magnesium, sodium, base saturation, and populations of Pseudomonas based on correlation analysis and canonical correspondence analysis (CCA). Cluster analysis showed that the communities of both Rhizoctonia and bacteria in sampled areas were separated based on healthy and diseased plants using denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE); however, there was no clear separation for Fusarium, Pythium and Trichoderma communities in sampled areas based on healthy and diseased plants, indicating these species might not be directly associated with Rhizoctonia root rot. Moreover, the disease suppression seems to be more related to the quantity of soil beneficial microorganisms rather than specific species. In addition, DGGE is a reliable technique to characterize microbial communities and identify fungal and bacterial species in complex soil systems.


Root rot Rhizoctonia communities Microbial communities Nematode DGGE CCA Correlation analysis 



This research was supported by a grant from the Nebraska Soybean Board. The authors thank the anonymous grower for providing soil and soybean plants from his farm. The authors also would like to thank Dr. Tamra Jackson and Dr. Loren Giesler for analyzing nematode populations in 2012, Mr. Bob Klein for assisting the collection of soil and plants, and Dr. Clive Bock for detailed editing of the manuscript


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Copyright information

© Koninklijke Nederlandse Planteziektenkundige Vereniging 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bo Liu
    • 1
  • Weishou Shen
    • 3
  • Hsinho Wei
    • 3
  • Hosanna Smith
    • 3
  • Frank J. Louws
    • 2
  • James R. Steadman
    • 3
  • James C. Correll
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Plant PathologyUniversity of ArkansasFayettevilleUSA
  2. 2.Department of Plant PathologyNorth Carolina State UniversityRaleighUSA
  3. 3.Department of Plant PathologyUniversity of Nebraska-LincolnLincolnUSA

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